This year I found the perfect decoration whilst browsing issue 51 of The Knitter. These delicate crocheted snowflakes by Valerie Bracegirdle (you can find her on Ravelry too) although shown as a garland, would make the perfect toppers for my presents if I used them singly. I decided to coordinate them to my wrapping, rather than making them in a traditional 'snow white' and chose scarlet and putty which I thought would compliment my scheme.
Firstly, let me say that I count myself a knitter who fairly regularly diverts off on a crocheting tangent, and as such my crochet skills are not that good. I would say that these snowflakes would be suitable for an 'improving' crocheter - they have a good range of stitches in them, but if you know how to make a basic double crochet, then the other stitches are easy enough to manage. Of course, to make the snowflake symmetrical requires a level of accuracy and this may be where a less experienced crocheter would come unstuck, and I certainly had to concentrate! Have a go, and remember to use the plethora of resources open to us all as crafters on YouTube and the internet - somebody out there will have asked the same question as you at some point!
If you are tempted to try these beautiful snowflakes, then here is all the information you need. I used just 3-4gms of MillaMia Naturally Soft Merino for each one, which makes them excellent for using up your odds and ends of yarn, and a 3.5mm hook. I found that this gave me a firm fabric and a nice even finish, but you may need to adjust your hook size to suit your own tension. The yarn really lends itself to this project, and crochet in general as the tight twist helps to prevent split stitches and produces a lovely smooth, even finish.
To finish, I didn't cut the yarn after the final slip stitch, but chained approx 25 and then again slip stitched to the bottom of the chain to make a loop. I would estimate that each snowflake took me less than a hour to complete - so have a go! - you still have plenty of time to make some stunning snowflake toppers for those extra special gifts this Christmas.
(posted by Max)